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>> those in the area reported smelling gas the moments leading up to the explosion but city officials say they have to investigate further before any cause can be determined. in south africa today, another emotional day in court for track star oscar pistorius. it's day two of the bail hearing for the former olympian who is accused of murdering his model girlfriend. prosecutors argue the crime was premeditated while defense lawyers say it was a terrible misunderstanding. jim ma -- meceda joins us live. >> reporter: the prosecution is expected to bring in more detas to support its contention that pistorius killed his girlfriend of three months, reeva steenkamp in cold blood, deliberately firing those four shots through his toilet room door behind which reeva steenkamp was cowering. pistorius should not be released on bail. the defense rejects this position.
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yesterday pistorius's defense lawyer reading from an affidavit painted a different picture of a loving but very vulnerable man who received death threats in the early morning hours of february 149 and without his legs on he became fearful according to this affidavit after hearing noise in the bathroom that there was an intruder in the house and only after he fired those shots and called out to reeva steenkamp to phone the police did he realize his tragic mistake and that it was she who was in the bathroom. but the prosecution is, again, drawing a different picture. it's claiming pistorius and his girlfriend had a row, there was nonstop shouting coming from his home before he took the time to put on his artificial legs and walk 20 feet to that toilet room door and fired those shots. the judge will now need to determine which picture of what happened in pistorius bedroom
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and bathroom is the truthful one before deciding on bail. it looks like an uphill battle to get that bail. back to you. well, the obama administration is reportedly set to unveil a new strategy to strike back against cyber espionage. this is new information that suggest china's government is behind cyber attacks. nbc's danielle leigh is live in washington with the details. danielle, good morning. what are we expecting to hear from the white house this morning? >> reporter: mara, good morning, the white house will come out with a report detailing new aggressive steps to protect u.s. trade secrets against cyber attacks. that could include fines, penalties and other trade action. 140 companies were tar feted. this kind of attack is something
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the department of defense and white house has been concerned about for quite some time. the china government is denying being involved in any sort of attack. >> joe biden is offering up best advice on how to defend yourself with a firearm. joe biden talked about gun roll efforts, including the size of ammunition clips and other proposals. during that chat biden said the best thing for texas is a shotgun. >> put that double-barrel shotgun and fire two blasts outside the house. i promise you, whoever is coming in is not going to -- you don't need an ar-15. it's harder to aim. it's harder to use. and in fact, you don't need 30 rounds to protect yourself. buy a shotgun. biden said he keeps two shot guns locked up at home and told his wife jill to use them if necessary. he's been considered for a big new job but marine general
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john allen said he's retiring. general allen just completed 19 months as top commander in afghanistan, but instead of taking the new job in europe, he'll retire to focus on helping his wife deal with health issues. allen was initially caught up in the sex scandal that forced cia director david petraeus to resign. eventually he was cleared of all wrongdoing. turning to the weather, including a big snowstorm, bill karins is here. right now it's california. they got their snow in the mountains last night and still tapering off but exiting the region. leaving a big chill in its wake. you can see the storm system as it goes to the south and very interesting ining weather day i california. report of one funnel cloud possibly a tornado. didn't do any damage. we didn't see a lot of moisture out of this. it was a moisture starved system, a lot of areas like san diego and l.a. everybody was under a quarter of an inch. the center of the spin is
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located right over the top of los angeles. notice there's a little bit of white left but not a lot, maybe a little bit towards the higher elevations here approaching southern portions of nevada and now the worst will kick in to arizona. we still have our winter storm warnings that's up in southern california until noon but may be dropping before then. winter weather advisories will be dropped here shortly as we go throughout our morning. temperatures are cold behind this system. dry in california. 41 in san francisco. 45 in vegas. this is pretty much about as cold as it gets and hopefully last cold spell of the winter. we'll have to wait and see if that comes to fruition. 66 in san francisco. again the worst of the weather the rainy weather and the snow higher elevations, flagstaff, arizona will get nailed. northwest showers today but under a rainy period. friday maybe some significant a
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60s. it does looking out in advance towards the weekend and beyond a warm up. >> thanks so much. >> coming up after the break an execution blocked at the 11th hour. one of the biggest diamond heists in memory and italy's mount etna roars to life. and a university professor is in hot water. you're watching "early today."
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welcome back to "early today." here's some other stories making news this morning. a federal appeals court stepped in at the very last minute to halt the execution of a georgia man citing his mental disability. warren lee hill had been set to die tuesday night after being convicted in the 1990 killing of a fellow inmate. officials in brussels are looking for eight robbers who pulled off a $50 million diamond heist at the airport.
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they apparently hid in a construction site outside and then cut through a fence. cars equipped with police lights got them to a plane carrying the jewels where they grabbed the diamonds from the cargo hold and took off. dramatic video coming out of italy where mt. etna has had the biggest explosion of the year. the famous volcano burst overnight, sending lava and gas shooting into the air. houston, we have a problem. that's what astronauts aboard the international space station were saying except no one could hear them. nasa losting communication with the iss for about three hours tuesday. and they blame a glitch in the software update. and a columbia professor in science bared all on quantum mechanics. he told the class in order to learn the subject you must, quote, strip to your raw and start over again. the professor's performance also included images of osama bin laden and a stuffed animal being
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stabbed by a sword. officials say they're reviewing the class. in health news, are you one of the lucky few who never catch a cold? according to a study, you should look at your dna. researchers found dna exposed to cold found markers in the tips of their chromosomes. earlier research has linked shorter dna caps to smoking and stress. >> announcer: "early today" health is brought to you by vagisil cream. turning now to business. stocks closed at five-year highs tuesday, but will caution from the feds snap wall street's streak? there's high interest in today's release of january's meeting minutes from the federal reserve after december's minutes revealed several members hawkish tones on stimulus, rocking markets and driving interest rates higher. elsewhere, earnings from dish network. before the bell, investors will find out if doubling down on the ads skipping hopper technology has paid off. high-end home builder toll brothers will also weigh in before markets open. also keep an eye on boeing, the
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largest group of its engineers approved a new four-year contract late last night but a smaller group rejected the offer authorizing the union to a strike at anytime. earnings are in from another attention-getter. herbalife topped estimates in 2013's forecast. the fbi is investigating whether insider trading took place the day before heinz ketchup's blockbuster deal to be acquired by warren buffett and 3g. >> a federal judge approved transocean to pay $1 billion in its role in the 2010 gulf oil disaster. meanwhile, the clock is ticking for bp to reach a last minute settlement before returning to court to pay billions of dollars in civil claims. check your cupboards before breakfast. kellogg's is recalling 11, 37 and 22-ounce boxes of special k red berries because they may contain pieces of glass. google reached a milestone tuesday claiming $800 a share
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for the first time. and a milestone for stanford university the first school to collect $1 billion in a single year. and watch out north face. the u.s. postal department is entering the smart clothing market. we're serious. under the brand name rain, heat and snow, the cash-strapped company plans to launch a new product line of apparel and accessories. coming up, tiger woods sizes up president obama's golf came. more headlines straight ahead. plus a discount at a chicago pizzeria that raises a few eyebrows. you're watching "early today."
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welcome back. now to some other stories that caught our eye this morning. we start in tennessee where several drivers had a brush with death following a collision on interstate 40. police dash cam footage shows one vehicle sparked a chain of crashes after driving over a ladder left on the road. fortunately, the multicar pileup caused only one minor injury. in virginia, joyriding in a stolen pickup truck came to a disastrous end for one group of teens. police were in pursuit of the suspects when they lost control and crashed into a house. there were no injuries and police made four arrests. in ohio, a massive fire torched one of the largest greenhouse operations in the midwest. fire companies from several towns rushed to oberlin. flames and smoke erupted from the blaze. frigid conditions have hampered firefighters in their efforts to put out that fire which is still burning this morning.
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and finally, a virginia pizza shop has a unique deal for pistol-packing customers. >> i'm offering a 15% discount for anyone who carries openly or shows me a concealed weapons permit. >> it's raised some eyebrows but the shop owner believes his program is in align with most in the firearms debate. turning to sport, the top five confrontations in college basketball. unranked missouri upset number 5 florida as the tigers set the lead in the closing minutes and held on for 60-53 over the gators. indiana over michigan state, the hoosiers took over first place in the big ten conference with a 72-68 winner over the spartans. and number two miami got a layup from reggie johnson with 5.7 seconds to go and then stole a pass and just edged virginia 54-50. well, tiger woods has given his opinion of president obama as a golfer following the round they played sunday in florida.
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tiger praised the president's golf game. >> we played under some tough conditions. and he hit the ball well. got amazing touch. after these four years if he spends more time playing the game of golf, i'm sure he can actually get to where he's a pretty good stick. >> really, what are you going to say about the president? >> and the 2014 road team soccer matched will include goal technology, will decide if the shot will count as a score. the president of fifa, the governing body of world soccer said tests in japan were successful. just ahead, "downton abbey" wraps its season in a big way. we'll tell you why losing at the oscars has its perks. plus, move over lebron, we'll show you a talented sea otter that can do a whole lot more than just catch fish. you're watching "early today."
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welcome back. our storm is exiting california and heading into arizona. the steadier rain that is. leftover showers and southern portions of nevada trying to sneaking up towards vegas with a little bit of precipitation especially with snow at the highest elevations. now as far as the forecast goes today we do clear you want in california today and as we go towards tomorrow not looking too bad there either very similar weather pattern still kind of chilly. won't be until the weekend we warm up southern cal. time now for entertainment. now that leonardo dicaprio, quote, is taking a break from acting, he's looking for other
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ways to occupy his time. it seems that wildlife activist is first on his list. the actor has called on the thai government to ban all ivory trade in the country. dicaprio is working with the world wildlife fund to take the lead on elephant conservation. also urging his friends to get involved. record exec clive davis has released a tell-all memoir which includes the revelation that he's bisexual. and he also reveals that kelly clarkson would burst into tears. while he was managing her first album. now clarkson is accusing davis of memory lapses. and misinformation. she says the only time she ever cried in his office was when davis called her a lousy writer who should, quote, just shut up and sing. ouch. british drama "downton abbey" raked in 8.2 million viewers. thanks to "downton" pbs has quadrupled its prime time average. >> we all know what the winners of the oscars get. what about the losers?
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the runners-up will be taking home swag bags totaling $45,000. that includes trips to australia, hawaii, condoms and tequila. >> those go with you to australia and howe. >> they certainly do. appointments for injectable fillers. and portion-control dinner ware. in case any of the losers plan to diet. turning now to a story from portland, oregon, where a sea otter is making a splash by showing off his basketball skills. eddie, the sea otter, definitely knows how to take it to the rack. the aging animal learned this trick after his arthritic elbows became a concern that caused him some concern. the exercises worked and he's been hooping it up ever since. can we keep him up a little longer? >> he's pretty cute. >> he doesn't show boat either. >> this is not show boating? >> no, he doesn't brag. >> what's funny, are a arthritic elbows? how do they know he had that. >> i'm mara schiavocampo, and this is "early today," just your
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first stop of the day today on your nbc station.
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well, some go to the mall of america to shop, others go to explore. a california ice sculptor overtook an area near the mall to build ice castles. and even has a light display built into the ice. the sculptor said the next move will be to practice with sand castles in hawaii. one michigan horse doesn't take to lock and key. 9-year-old mariska has developed a knack for escaping her stall,
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and helping others do the same. nicknamed houdini horse mariska has earned 800,000 views on youtube. her owner said she's motivated by her stomach. and most often sneaks out to snag food. i'm sure she gets tired of that hay. take a look at these dramatic moments caught on tape thanks to skillfully placed cameras. dashboard cameras become the norm for russian drivers. last week's meteor sightings was just a few. and it's become from did you see that to crashes and rollovers to watching helicopters fly, to army tanks crossing the road. the scenes show near-misses and even include a wave of cows. we'll see the cows in a second spilling out. i hope they're okay, though. i think they're probably okay. otherwise, we wouldn't show it because we have class. >> i'm sure they're all fine. what cow doesn't walk away from that? >> exactly. rolling over on the street. time for an early look at stories making news in the day ahead. and a look back. today marks the tenth anniversary of the station fire in rhode island. 100 people were killed in that blaze caused by a band's pyrotechnics.
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former congressman jesse jackson and his wife are going to make pleas in court. for allegedly spending $750,000 of campaign funds. happy birthday, rihanna turns 27. and cindy crawford turns 47. all day long you can stay on top of the very latest developments on those stories and the best political analysis on msnbc. and tonight, be sure to watch "nbc nightly news" with brian williams. and, finally, here's a look at what's coming up later this morning on the "today" show. yahoo! ceo marissa mayer will be live in studio to talk about balancing work and motherhood. and today's professionals tackle some hot topics including president obama's golf game with tiger woods. now keep it on this channel for continuing local news, weather, sports and more. i'm mara schiavocampo. thanks for watching "early today." just your first stop of the day today on your nbc station. have a good one.
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happen hing now, more tearful testimony as the man known as the blade runner heads back to court. new revelations from overnight. plus, what police just told a judge today found at the scene of the crime, next. >> right now at this hour, crews cleaning up after a massive water main break in san francisco. we'll cover this one just ahead. >> and stanford university has hit a record milestone. >> we take you live over san
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francisco for a look at the bay bridge dancing in the early morning and dawn there. testing things out for the big show on wednesday, february 20. this is "today in the bay." >> announcer: from nbc bay area, this is "today in the bay." >> nice inspiring way to get going. >> not bad. >> 4:41. good morning. i'm john kelly. >> i'm laura garcia-cannon. let's check the forecast. what a chilly one yesterday. >> even colder this morning. good morning, john and laura. good morning at home. you're almost there. we are at wednesday. want to help you get over the hump. today you need your heaviest winter coat. temperatures will trop into the 20s. damp out there from yesterday's rain. you really want to keep in mind we could see black ice form throughout the morning. travel cautiously. we'll keep tabs on your temperatures as they fall. and we had interesting weather

Early Today
NBC February 20, 2013 4:00am-4:30am PST

News/Business. The latest world and national news, and reports on the day's upcoming events. New. (CC)

TOPIC FREQUENCY California 6, San Francisco 4, Arizona 3, Reeva Steenkamp 3, Virginia 3, Pistorius 2, Joe Biden 2, Davis 2, Obama 2, Biden 2, Australia 2, Nevada 2, Hawaii 2, China 2, U.s. 2, Italy 2, Injectable Fillers 1, Fbi 1, Michigan State 1, Gators 1
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